Equal Partners
by Roland Ezri

Equal Partners by Roland Ezri

Equal Partners

By Roland Ezri

"Women are the backbone of all societies. They do a substantial part of the work, and play a major role in raising the future generation yet they are largely powerless. The decisions that count are made by men and foisted upon women."

Writings by Roland Ezri

The Second Exodus – Italy – CCXV. Our Immigration Options (5 of 10)


Imagine a vast land with high mountain peaks and deep valleys, oceans, rivers, and myriad of lakes. A land which, in places, is very cold, at other places very hot. A land with vast forests and big open spaces. A land with an incredible variety of flora and fauna, fertile soil, and what appeared to be inexhaustible supplies of raw material such as timber, coal, oil, and minerals. Imagine America! To this charmed continent, people in the tens of millions, came from all over the world with high hopes in their hearts and great dreams in their heads. Their sense of adventure, vitality, and the courage to face and overcome incredible difficulties helped in shaping what was to become the greatest nation on earth.

There came a time when America could no longer continue with its open doors policy. Sometimes (I believe) in the twenties, a quota system was established for each country. If you wanted to immigrate to the U.S., you applied, and your name was placed on a waiting list; and, depending on the country, you may have to wait for years for the actual immigration procedures to commence. Some Egyptians have done just that; and in view of the fact that they had been forced to leave Egypt, the process was accelerated. Thus, at Torinesi, some families were waiting to immigrate to the equivalent of paradise on earth!

But here again, considering the circumstances, this generous country came to the rescue. The quota system was set aside, and an unlimited number of visas were issued for those Egyptian who qualified. But you had to act quickly for there was a restricted time frame. Once apprised of this development, we moved fast. I will talk of that in a future section.

South America

There were many countries in South America that welcomed immigrants. Actually, many Egyptians were going to one of those countries. At the top of this list came Brazil, a vast country offering many opportunities, specially for skilled immigrants. Many of those Egyptians have started a new life there, and today have bona fide Brazilian children and grandchildren. My cousin Gaston is one of them.

Argentina, Chili, and Uruguay were some of the destinations mentioned by other Egyptians.

So how did we feel about South America? Robert and I had no intentions of setting foot there! Yes, in many of these nations you could make a good life for yourself; you can again enjoy the slow pace of Egypt, and have a maid, for labor was very cheap. But, for the two of us, South America, was synonymous with instability and dictatorship. While my mother and father didn’t proffer any opinion, it was clear that South America was not their preferred destination.

Brazil today is a powerhouse. There is a world of difference between the Brazil of the ’50s and the 21st Century one. Ditto for many other nations on that continent.

Please remember that this was our opinion 55 years ago! Today, with the benefit of time and maturity, I view South America in a completely different light.

Comments are closed.